Now in its 21st year, the OU-JLIC’s (Seif Jewish Learning Initiative on Campus) network of Campus Directors provides support for students at 25 campuses in the United States, Canada, and Israel. OU-JLIC fosters an ongoing commitment to Torah study and lifestyle and a warm, welcoming home for Jewish students on campus.
Photo on left: Students gather in the Beit Midrash for one of many student-led Chaburot at the OU JLIC/TVA Summer in Jerusalem, a program that brought almost 100 college students to Israel to learn, intern, and volunteer for seven weeks.
total unique participants in spring 2021
kallot, 653 chattanim taught by directors and
were mesader kedushin at 280 weddings to date
significant relationships with students
in the Spring 2021 semester
REACHING COLLEGE STUDENTS
TRAINING NEW CAMPUS DIRECTORS
A yearlong Fellowship for Campus Professionals trains couples who are interested in advancing Jewish education, leadership, and community for college students in North America. Open to couples living in Israel and America, the intensive training consists of group meetings, support, and hands-on work with college students. The program offers an annual stipend with all related expenses paid.
THE WHAT AND WHY
ADDRESSING CHANGES IN JEWISH LIFE ON CAMPUS
OU-JLIC professionals on campus help young college students navigate the many challenges and influences they
face day to day, including a sharp increase in anti-Zionism and antisemitism. College campuses have become the
front lines for the struggle to maintain positive Israel sentiment and Jewish identity. In addition, students are
affected by society’s attitudes toward gender and sexuality, while Jewish demographics continue to shift.
IN THE COMMUNITY
While a typical college campus is self-contained,
cities such as Los Angeles, Toronto, and Atlanta
have multiple campuses within the same
community. In these cities, directors live in the
communities they serve, which allows them to
reach students across many campuses and stay
in close contact with their alumni as their lives
progress through graduate schools, marriage, and
their own families. Los Angeles campuses include
UCLA; California State University, Northridge;
Santa Monica College; and Western University.
OU-JLIC West Coast Campus Directors serving UCLA, Western University, Santa Monica College, and California State University of Northridge (CSUN). From left: UCLA Campus Directors Rabbi Aryeh and Sharona Kaplan; Santa Monica College educators Rabbi Nick and Orit Faguet; Western University Campus Directors Dr. Rod and Dr. Daniella Najibi; and California State University, Northridge Campus Directors Rabbi Bryan and Sondra Borenstein at OU-JLIC West Coast’s annual fundraiser.nders care packages with Rabbi Joe Wolfson.
NY State Senator Simcha Felder meets with OU-JLIC Downtown students
and young professionals along with Rabbi Joe Wolfson to thank them for
having registered hundreds of his constituents for vaccine appointments
as part of the Killing COVID with Kindness program.
OU-JLIC WEST COAST ALUMNI TURNED CAMPUS DIRECTORS
Rabbi Nick (SMC), Orit Faguet (SMC), and Dr. Rod Najibi (Western) are OU-JLIC UCLA alumni who grew up in LA and
now live and work with OU-JLIC in LA. Dr. Daniella Najibi (Western) is an alum of UCLA Dental School. Rabbi Bryan
Borenstein (CSUN) grew up in the Los Angeles Valley and Sondra Borenstein (CSUN) grew up in Ventura County.
“We are so privileged to have the Kaplans in our life! They have been integral to our religious growth, and both of us benefited greatly when we were students at UCLA. Rabbi Kaplan and Sharona have helped us so much with our shana rishona including pre-wedding classes, day of the wedding, and all sheilos after! We are so grateful to them and OU-JLIC for everything they do for us.”
–Yonah and Molly Reback, alumni couple who live in the community where Rabbi Aryeh
and Sharona Kaplan are OU-JLIC directors at UCLA
“Some find it hard to find their place Jewishly in Brooklyn, and though there are many shuls and schools there, many of them are the same flavor. Our OU-JLIC Program serves as a community base in Brooklyn. Word has spread that this is a young community where students and young families fit in.”
–Rabbi Reuven Boshnack, OU-JLIC Brooklyn rabbi
“OU-JLIC has continued to provide an incredibly warm environment for college students searching for spiritual surroundings in an increasingly secular and often hostile college campus environment... Our efforts in maintaining and strengthening the relationships between our educators and students during COVID have been truly remarkable!”
–Moshe Smith, Chairman of the OU-JLIC Commission
OU-JLIC Atlanta directors Rabbi Ben and Rachel Atwood live within the
Atlanta community and serve Emory, Georgia State, and Georgia Tech
campuses as part of a part-time pilot program.
ATLANTA: NEW KIDS IN TOWN
In partnership with the Hillels of Georgia and Emory Hillel, the
OU is piloting a part-time OU-JLIC program to serve the Atlantaarea Jewish community. The new OU-JLIC couple, Rabbi Ben
and Rachel Atwood, will be working with Atlanta-area students
from Emory University, Georgia State, and Georgia Tech. They
will be providing Beit Midrash learning, Shabbat programming,
social events, and pastoral care.
Be part of OU-JLIC’s effort in growing and strengthening its impact within our community. Your generous tax-deductible donation of $54.00 or more entitles you to a Jewish Action subscription.